16 Days against Gender Violence: What will YOU do?
Over the next 16 days, the colour orange is intended to symbolise hope for a future free from violence against women and girls. In New York, the Empire State building and the UN Secretariat building were lit orange on Monday evening to help launch the campaign to "Orange Your Neighborhood."
In Cambodia, UN Women is working closely with local organisations and the government to help rectify some long-entrenched imbalances and discriminations in society.
According to the Cambodian Committee on Women (CAMBOW), a coalition of 34 local organizations, "women have traditionally been seen as being inferior to their male counterparts. This is reflected in traditional codes of conduct such as the Chbab Srey (Women's Law) that teach women to be subservient to men.
"Despite some attempts by the Cambodian Government to combat domestic violence, many changes still need to be made, particularly in the area of legislation. Most importantly, perpetrators of domestic violence need to be made aware that they are responsible for their actions and that they may be subject to punishment. There is still a tendency for society to believe that domestic violence is an internal family problem, which leads to reluctance on the part of the victim to seek help or even to admit that there is a problem. This damaging perception needs to be changed so that victims, perpetrators, authorities and the general public can work together to eradicate domestic violence."
OneWorld's "Smart Youth Cambodia" project ("Youth Chhlat" in Khmer) is teaching young people about basic life skills and sexual health, helping young boys and girls to learn to treat each other with respect and dignity. One of the first e-Learning lessons we developed with the Ministry of Education uses virtual peer educators, or "info-cartoons," to talk to young people about gender-based violence.
UN Women is focused on increasing Cambodian women’s participation -- in politics, in decision-making processes, and in the economy -- and empowering women to know and claim their rights.
But what they want to know now is, what will you do to stop violence against women?
Find out more about what UN Women is doing in Cambodia to address violence against women.
"The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence is an international campaign originating from the first Women's Global Leadership Institute sponsored by the Center for Women's Global Leadership in 1991. Participants chose the dates, November 25, International Day Against Violence Against Women and December 10, International Human Rights Day, in order to symbolically link violence against women and human rights and to emphasize that such violence is a violation of human rights.
This 16-day period also highlights other significant dates including November 29, International Women Human Rights Defenders Day, December 1, World AIDS Day, and December 6, which marks the Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre."